So, you’ve decided that you are going to move away from your current host however now you are facing a problem that how will you move your blog to another host as you have a notion that it’s one of the difficult task as playing around with database may finish your blog. It’s quite natural to think this way as when I did it for the first time, I had the same feeling too. However, after moving it to the other host, I realized that it isn’t that difficult and by following these simple steps you can achieve the task pretty easily -
1. Backup the database : This is the most important step and in any case you shouldn’t miss it. This will ensure that in case anything goes wrong you won’t miss your blog posts, readers for ever. WordPress database backup plugin will be able to help you achieve this task in a snap. Although, if you take my suggestion, you should do it with the help of phpMyAdmin.
2. Backup the Wp-Content folder : Wp-Content folder is pretty important as it holds your plugins, themes and all the uploads (files & images) which you’ve used in your blog posts (in case you use FTP to upload it to some other place, then don’t forget to back up that folder too). You can use FileZilla or any other FTP program to complete this task.
3. Install WordPress on your new host : Most of the hosts will provide you an IP address through which you’ll be able to manage your web host account and will be able to make the changes on it. Use it to install WordPress before you make any changes in the name servers. Just ensure that while installing the WordPress the table prefix needs to be the same. By default the table prefix of WordPress is wp_ and if you didn’t make any changes in it while you were installing WordPress then it should work just fine.
Now comes the slightly difficult part -
4. Delete the old tables : Every web host will give you access to phpMyAdmin or else you may use SQLyog Community edition and delete all the tables which were created with your new installation of WordPress.
5. Import the old database : With the help of phpMyAdmin or SQLyog community edition you’ll be able to import the old database completely.
6. Replace the Wp-Content folder : Replace the wp-content folder which got created with the new installation with the one you backed up in the step 2.
8. Customize the new wordpress installation : There are many changes which you make while using WordPress and the most common is the permalink structure. So don’t forget to make these changes in the new WordPress installation to achieve the desired results.
9. Change the nameservers : Once you are sure that everything is at it’s place, then go ahead and change the nameserver and relax for next 24 hrs. and once the DNS propagation will be complete, your blog will work just like normal.
Quick Tip : If you use Google Apps for email solution for your domain, then don’t forget to change the MX server details too else you’ll loose lot of important e-mails.